First things first, in the letter the editor in which an Ole Miss alumnus talked about the mediocrity of Ole Miss sports, he mentioned Ole Miss hadn’t won an SEC baseball championship in 40 years. That is true, if you ignore the whole year of 2009, otherwise that’s factually inaccurate as Ole Miss won the SEC baseball title in 2009.
Do not talk to me about tiebreakers, there’s a 2003 SEC West Championship banner hanging in the Vaught.
The article refers to baseball’s facilities and fan support, which most certainly are some of the best in the SEC. What it doesn’t mention is the clear scholarship disadvantage that Ole Miss, Alabama, Mississippi State and Auburn deal with. If you’d like to help negate that disadvantage, please get a lottery in Mississippi.
If you’d like to argue that Ole Miss over invested in baseball, I’m here for that argument, but to try and convince a readership that Mike Bianco has underachieved or been “mediocre” during his tenure at Ole Miss is a fallacy.
Bianco has won the SEC. Bianco has finished third in the country. Bianco has hosted seven regionals. Bianco has played in five super regionals. Bianco has 659 wins at Ole Miss. Bianco has 273 SEC Wins at Ole Miss. He’s played in the College World Series.
Bianco made Ole Miss baseball. The comparison to Mississippi State is silly. The writer doesn’t reference the Bulldogs four overall losing seasons since 2001. Bianco has zero overall losing seasons since 2001. Bianco will never have a losing overall season at Ole Miss. Take that to the bank.
Ole Miss baseball, fighting the aforementioned scholarship disadvantage, isn’t mediocre this year. They’re 11-10 with the toughest Eastern Division schedule in the league. They’re going to make a regional, and they’re going to be hell on wheels in it.
To insist that Bianco, and what his program has achieved is mediocre is ludicrous. To insist that his revival of a program that had five single-digit-win SEC seasons in the ten years proceeding him to a program that constantly competes to host regionals and win SEC Western Division titles is a walking stick of mediocrity is mind numbing.
Bianco built Ole Miss baseball, and the resume he’s produced can read a lot of things, but mediocre most certainly isn’t one of them.
Collin Brister is a former sports editor of The Daily Mississippian and from Eupora.